Kansas City Bicycle Accident Attorney
Being involved in a severe motor vehicle accident can be debilitating. Being involved in a motor vehicle accident while operating a bicycle could be even more devastating. There is far less protection for those who choose bicycles in their daily Kansas City commutes versus full-sized car and truck operators.
If you or a loved one gets injured in a bicycle accident, you could be entitled to damages for your injuries. Even if you use your bicycle safely, you still may not be able to prevent accidents. Having a Kansas City bike lawyer looking out for your best interest could be the difference between winning or losing your claim.
Since many motor vehicle drivers don’t look out for bicyclists, this often causes horrible bicycle accidents. Bicyclists often suffer horrible injuries due to the impact of other vehicles. Bicyclists can practice safe driving habits that prevent bicycle accidents, and the Missouri government can enact laws that protect bike riders, but there’s no way to eliminate all of the hazards bike riders face.
Bike accidents can upend your life, and that’s why personal injury claim experts suggest that you contact a personal injury attorney in Kansas City for immediate support with your city bicycle accident before accepting any settlement from your insurance company.
Missouri Bicycle Laws
Missouri has installed bike laws that regulate bicyclists’ behaviors on the road and how other drivers should interact with them. Typically, bicyclists should follow the same laws as any other driver, but the following guidelines are specifically for bicyclists in Missouri:
- Cyclists should stay as far to the right as possible at all times, except when passing another bicyclist, preparing for a left turn, or avoiding hazards.
- Cyclists are not allowed to pedal next to each other, and they must ride in a line unless on a bike path.
- Appropriate reflective materials and light must be in place at all times.
- When riding at night, a bicycle should have a front-facing headlight that provides 500 feet of visibility and a rear-facing red reflector visible from a distance of 600 feet.
It’s also important for motor vehicle operators to practice awareness and to share the road with cyclists. It’s illegal and dangerous for cars to park in bicycle lanes and vehicles need to maintain safe distances when sharing the road with others. If you’ve been involved in a bicycle accident in Kansas City because of the improper actions of another automobile operator, contact Eslinger Law Firm today.
Bicyclist Accident Statistics
Bicycles are an environmentally friendly alternative to cars, and that’s part of the reason why individuals choose biking rather than driving for their daily commutes. Bicycles also provide a healthier option for the bicyclist compared to taking an Uber or public transport. The majority of individuals still use cars and don’t understand how to operate their motor vehicles to reduce the chances of harming others.
Several risk factors affect bicycle accident statistics. According to the NHTSA, adults between the ages of 50 and 59 have the highest bicycle death rates. Males are six times more likely to die in a bicycle accident compared to females and four more times likely to be injured.
Most bicycle accident fatalities occur in urban areas, but only 3% occurred on bike paths. The majority of bicycle accidents (61%) occur at non-intersections. Many other factors could increase the likelihood of being involved in an accident, including the time of the day, time of the year, weather, and where exactly the pedal bicyclists are on the road.
Common Bike Accident Injuries in Missouri
When you’re involved in an accident, especially bike accident victims, you could be subject to lost wages and serious injuries from your head, down your spinal cord, throughout your body.
Since bicyclists are not protected from the dangers of an accident, they lack protection and could injure themselves during an impact with a motor vehicle or commercial truck.
The following common injuries could have lasting effects, require ongoing medical care, and entitle you to damages in your claim:
- Broken bones, especially collarbones
- Dental injuries
- Fractured jaw
- Fractured limbs
- Nerve damage, semi, and full paralysis
- Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
If you’ve experienced any of the following injuries after your Kansas City bike accident, contact Eslinger law firm for a free consultation to discuss your treatment options, pursue damages from the other driver involved, and find a seasoned Missouri bicycle accident lawyer to represent your claim.
Determining Liability in a Kansas City Bicycle Accident
As the primary mode of transportation for most individuals, car drivers often feel entitled on the road. In addition to sharing the roads with smaller bikes, this entitlement could lead to bicyclists going unseen by unsuspecting drivers. Many Kansas City bicycle accidents occur because motorists were unable to see them coming.
When a traveler fails to operate their vehicle in a manner that offers a duty of care to other travelers, then their behaviors could be deemed legally negligible by law. Negligent conduct makes drivers culpable, and the following examples of negligent behavior contribute to accidents in Missouri:
- Driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol. More than a third of bicycle accident deaths involved alcohol use.
- Failing to yield
- Illegal U-turns
- Turning without signaling
Some of the most common causes for bike accidents include being hit by a car, falls, unrepaired roadways, riding errors, collisions with fixed objects, and avoiding animals. Kansas City bicycle accident attorneys can offer support in proving who is negligible and legally responsible for your injuries.
Steps To Securing Damages in a Bicycle Accident
After you’re involved in a bicycle accident, the first thing experts suggest doing to protect your claim is getting medical support and treatment. Also, it can be beneficial to your claim to call the local authorities and get a copy of the police report. Don’t let the other driver talk you out of making a police report.
Insurance companies often look to take advantage of victims’ vulnerability at this moment by attempting to persuade them into accepting a settlement much lower than what they’re entitled to. Accident attorneys suggest holding off on signing an agreement for compensation with the insurance company until after you have at least consulted with an experienced Kansas City bike accident attorney.
A claim for damages after a successful Kansas City bicycle accident is won or settled out of court will typically include medical bills, lost wages, future earning potential, and non-economic damages like pain and suffering.
Missouri Personal Injury Statutes
Missouri is a comparative negligence state, meaning that the total compensation damages you’re entitled to after a settlement or verdict will be reduced by the total percentage you, the victim, are found to be at fault. Since Missouri is a pure comparative negligence state, if a victim is awarded $100,000 in damages but is found to be 10% at fault, they would only receive $90,000 in total compensation.
Like many other states, Missouri has implemented the Missouri Statute of Limitations to stipulate when a bicycled accident claim can be filed. The statute specifies that personal injury victims, like bike accident victims, have five years to file their claim. This is almost double the two to three-year statute in most states.
Your Eslinger Law injury attorney can carefully investigate the facts in your claim, measure the extent of your injuries, and will know the state and local laws and customs that may affect your case. An attorney will also estimate the percentage that a court could find you to be at fault for your injuries. Seek a free consultation with an adept accident attorney in the Kansas City area today.
Kansas City Bike Accident Attorneys Can Help
Hiring a Kansas City personal injury lawyer and pursuing a claim against the responsible party can help you alleviate the costs you face and help you begin repairing your life. Helmets and protective gear can offer some assistance in the event of an accident but may not be able to prevent all of your bicycle accidents.
If you or someone close to you has been involved in a bicycle accident, contact a skilled bike accident lawyer in Kansas City, MO. The Kansas City personal injury attorneys at Eslinger Law Firm will give your claim the attention it deserves to be successful.
Accidents involving bikes, motor vehicles, commercial trucks, pedestrians, or other hazards can have life-altering effects on your life. The Eslinger Law Firm will use its diversity, resources, and investigative skills to prove negligence and recover all of the financial compensation available to our clients to help them recover to the best of their abilities during these trying times.